In honor of IU’s 102nd Homecoming, the notorious late-night talk show host, Jay Leno, graced the stage of our very own IU Auditorium this past Friday, October 17th.
The crowd was filled to the brim with anticipation. Children, students, and adults alike were loudly stirring as they awaited the performance of a man many had watched nightly for years. The barrier of the television screen was about to finally be broken, as Leno was somewhere within the building, and soon would arrive on stage in person.
In order to bring peace to a buzzing crowd, B-Town native Charlie Joseph opened the show with an acoustic jazz set. Nerves were calmed and viewers became comfortable in their seats, soothed by Joseph’s smooth vocals and gentle guitar strumming.
However, the excitement for Leno could not be shaken. The crowd applauded Joseph honestly, but immediately erupted in stirring again. The Legendary Leno was on the way.
During the show, two observations struck as pure truth.
The first—yes, his chin is that big.
For years it has been discussed if pictures of Leno were simply exaggerated, in the way caricatures exaggerate small differences of faces. But this chin, this iconic chin, is truly pronounced.
The second fact—Leno still has it.
Jay Leno may have retired from The Tonight Show, but it’s evident that he will never retire from comedy. It didn’t matter if you were young or old, by the end of the show you were sure to be doubled over in laughter. Leno appealed to the funny bone of every audience member, referring to current news headlines and making the audience laugh at his view of Hugh Heffner’s recent wife “bed panning for gold.” He drew on the correlation between cat ownership and single women, the sexual connotations of IKEA furniture, and a crowd favorite seemed to be his bit about “explosive diarrhea.”
If given the opportunity to see Jay Leno, a key player the history of comedy and late night talk-shows, TAKE IT. He is undeniably a genius in the craft.
By Abbey Hickey and Mikaela Malott, WIUX News Team